Wednesday, September 25, 2013

How to Avoid Losing to eBay Snipers

Sniping occurs when a bid is about to end. Some

yahoo rushes in and bids a little higher than the

highest bid as the clock runs out of time – winning

the bid. Sniping is against the rules at eBay, but it

doesn’t slow the snipers down! In most cases, even

if you report it, the sniper will get away with it, and

you will have lost the item that you wanted to win

so badly. Unfortunately, in order to avoid losing the

items you want to snipers at eBay, you have to

take on the sniper mentality. You also need to

snipe in a way that will not violate eBay’s rules.

Snipping can be done in one of two ways. The first

way is the safest, but not necessarily the easiest.

Simply keep up with the item you are bidding on.

Make a note of the date and time that the auction

will end, and make sure that you are in front of your

computer and logged into the auction well before that

specific time. The objective is to either bid higher than

the highest bid during the last few seconds – which is

what snipers do - or to simply make sure that you are

not outbid by a sniper.

Remember that sniping is against the rules, so you

should log in about thirty or forty five minutes before

the bidding ends, and get your bid up until it is the

highest bid. At that point, all you need to do is to

keep an eye out to make sure that nobody else

raises the bid. If you’ve been logged in for a while,

this cannot be considered sniping.

Using this method, you must be aware of automatic

bidders. It is very hard to bid against people who use

bidding software. That software has been designed for

the purpose of snipping, and your chances of

outbidding the software manually are very slim –

which leads us to the second method of snipping

– Snipping services.

Snipping services are very easy to find online, and

they are relatively inexpensive. You can also

purchase your own snipping software. If you want to

become a sniper, purchasing your own software is

usually the best way to go if you bid on a lot of items.

You just set up the software, tell it which auction to

watch and what the highest price you are willing to

bid is, and let it do the work - just remember that it

is against the rules, and while eBay seldom enforces

this rule, you will be running the risk of getting

banned from eBay.

Sniping is bad if someone does it to you, but if you

use it yourself to win bids, it can be a wonderful thing.

On the other hand, it may not be very ethical.

Outbidding someone is one thing, sniping is

something altogether different!

The eBay Shipping Center

eBay wants to help sellers with every aspect of their

eBay business. The eBay shipping center was

created to help ensure that you get your items to

your customers in a timely manner, in the most

efficient and economical way possible.

The eBay shipping center will help you print shipping

labels, help you figure shipping costs, and even help

you with International shipping. Shipping information

for all of the major shipping companies, including the

USPS can be found through the shipping center. You

can even purchase insurance for packages that will

be shipped by the USPS directly through the shipping


One of the greatest features of the eBay Shipping

Center is the ability to order free co-branded shipping

boxes for USPS shipments. These boxes are

delivered to you, at no cost! This will cut a great deal

of your shipping expenses because you won’t have to

purchase your own boxes! There is also a great video

that will teach you how to save time and money on

your shipping, and whether you are a buyer or a

seller, you can easily track your packages through

the eBay shipping center as well.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

eBay and Customer Service

If you are running an eBay business, you may not

realize that the need for great customer service still

exists – even for online auctions. When a buyer

receives quality customer service from you, they

will potentially do one of two things – or both. They

will give you great feedback, and they may look for

more of your auctions in the future. If you hope to

make a living from eBay, you have to stop thinking

of it as an ‘auction’ and start running it like a


If you owned a brick and mortar business, how

would you treat your customer while they were

standing at your counter, waiting for you to finish

ringing up their order? You would be helpful and

respectful of course! You would do everything that

you could to guarantee that customers return to

your establishment in the future. You would bend

over backwards to make sure that their buying

experience with you was both satisfactory and

enjoyable. Why would you do any less at the

close of one of your eBay auctions?

First, act quickly at the close of your auctions.

Contact the winner, and congratulate them. Describe

the item they have won and how the item will be

shipped – even if this information is already part of

the description for the auction. Remind them of their

winning bid amount, and give them payment options

and instructions. Let them know when the item will

be shipped.

Close your email by thanking them for participating

in your auction. You might even take this opportunity

to tell them about other open auctions that you have

as well. Think of this contact with the winner as a

conversation that you are having with a customer

who is standing at your counter in that imaginary

brick and mortar store.

Once the payment and shipping details have been

taken care of, contact your buyer again. Let them

know when the item was shipped – the exact date

and time – and when it is expected to arrive on their

end. During this contact, let them know that if they

have any problems or questions, that they should

contact you through the eBay site. If they do

contact you in the future, make sure that you

answer promptly, and that you do all that you can

to make them happy with their purchase – even if

it means issuing a refund.

Yes. You should be open to issuing refunds,

depending on what the item is. Furthermore, you

should issue refunds promptly. Of course, it is

reasonable to expect the buyer to return the item to

you, at your expense, before the refund is issued –

but once you receive the item, issue the refund

promptly. This is just good business!

eBay University – What Is It All About?

eBay University is the learning program that eBay

established to help people become successful eBay

merchants. For convenience, eBay classes are held

in many locations throughout the United States, and

classes may also be completed from home, using

your computer.

You should note that all of the information you will

learn through eBay University can be found on the

website – for free. However, understanding that free

information isn’t always easy. eBay University will

teach you how to open a seller’s account, how to

conduct research and create listings, how to improve

listings for greater success, how to integrate Paypal

with eBay, how to monitor your auctions, and how to

complete transactions.

Once you’ve finished the Selling Basics course, you

are ready for the ‘Beyond the Basics’ course. This

advanced course will teach you how to start and

grow an eBay business, how to choose and create

listing formats that sell, how to use all of the eBay

resources, how to market your business, how to

pack and ship your items, and much more. Both

courses are reasonably priced, and well worth the

short amount of time that it takes to complete

Monday, September 23, 2013

How to Use eBay Escrow Services

If you buy or sell big ticket items on eBay, you need

to know about the available escrow services. An

escrow service is designed to protect buyers and

sellers from being ripped off. The funds for the sale

go to the escrow service, and then the seller ships

the item to the buyer. Once the item has been

received, the funds are released from the escrow

service to the seller.

In some instances, both the item and the funds go

through the escrow service, and the service makes

sure that the buyer gets the item, and the seller

gets the money. There is a small fee for the service,

and it is usually a fixed percentage of the sale price.

It is up to the buyer and seller to decide who will

pay the fees. Often, the fees are split between the

buyer and seller.

If you want to use an escrow service, there is only

one service that eBay recommends, and they back

that service up. This service is Over

the years, there have been many ‘look-alike’

escrow services, using variations of the

domain name, but they have shown to be less than

reputable companies. Make sure you use the

services of for the greatest protection.

The eBay Trading Assistants Program

If you excel at eBay auctions, you might want to

consider an additional source of revenue as well. The

eBay Trading Assistant Program will allow you to

sell items for other eBay members on consignment.

Being successful at your own auctions is the key

to becoming a successful trading assistant for other


Often, newcomers simply don’t know how to make

their items sell. Many people who are auctioning off

a one time big ticket item, such as cars or real

estate, will often employ the services of an eBay

Trading Assistant. Items such as these can add

up to very big commissions for serious trading

assistants! Usually, trading assistants are

responsible for every aspect of the auction,

including shipping the product to the customer and

collecting payment. For high ticket items, the person

who hires

Trading Assistants get access to trading assistant

marketing materials which are quite helpful. In order

to become an approved trading assistant, you must

have sold at least ten items in the last ninety days,

have a feedback score of at least 100 with 97%

positive feedback or higher, and your eBay account

must be in good standing.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

You Can Sell Anything on eBay – Or Can You?

Over 100 million people are members of eBay.

Through eBay, you can buy items in almost any

category that you can imagine – at great prices.

You can also sell almost anything you can

imagine on eBay – people often sell items that have

absolutely no real value for very high prices. There

are limits, however, to what can be bought and sold.

eBay does not allow certain items to be auctioned

through their website. Services are one type of ‘item’

that cannot be auctioned – simply because it is not

an item. Some seller’s blatantly ignore this however.

The sell of other items is illegal, even if it isn’t being

sold through eBay. eBay restricts the sale of any

type of item that is considered ‘illegal for sale’ in any

other selling format. Illegal items such as satellite

descramblers are forbidden as well.

Anything that is copyrighted - such as copies of

DVDs, CDs, or software - may not be sold through

eBay auctions. You can, however, sell a DVD, CD,

or any software that you bought legitimately…as

long as you are not just selling a copy that you

made of these types of items. eBay does not allow

the sale of ‘replicas.’ A replica is a knockoff version

of designer items, such as purses, dresses, shoes,

or sunglasses that look identical to those that have

designer labels.

Items that are regulated by the state or federal

government are forbidden on eBay. These items

include alcoholic beverages, weapons and firearms,

all tobacco products, and both prescription and

illegal drugs. There are small exceptions to this rule,

however. If you have a collectable, such as a tin that

contains tobacco, you may sell that item if the

package has never been opened, and if you state the

contents of the package are not meant for

consumption. There are other conditions that must be

met as well when selling these types of collectables.

Any type or breed of animal or reptile may not be

sold through an eBay auction. This includes animals

that were once living, and are now stuffed and

mounted. This rule may also apply to items that are

taken from endangered species, such as Ivory. When

it comes to these types of items, when in doubt,


Tickets may be sold, but it is illegal to sell tickets

for a higher price than you originally paid for them.

This is called ticket scalping, and it is illegal.

Lottery tickets are also banned from eBay

auctions, as well as raffle tickets. Again, if you are

not sure if your item is eligible for an eBay auction,

either don’t put it up for auction, or contact eBay to

get an answer one way or the other. Don’t risk